If Kamehameha running back Brandon Kahookele wants to walk out of Aloha Stadium a winner on Saturday, he might want to take a trip up to Manoa to get a little advice from former Kahuku standout Aofaga Wily.
Punahou’s defense has allowed a rusher to top 100 yards only six times since 2010, and Wily has done it to them three of those times. Even better for Kahookele and the bruisers in front of him, Kahuku won all three.
No. 1 Punahou and No. 2 Kamehameha hook up on Saturday night at Aloha Stadium. Kamehameha’s Kahookele is coming off a banner night on which he ran for 244 yards against ‘Iolani and has already collected two games of more than 199 yards this year, something no Warrior has done in a season since the Prep Bowl era began in 1973.
The Buffanblu are 3-3 over the past three years when an opponent runs for more than 100 yards against them and 24-6 when they put the collar on the opponent’s best rusher. But those are just numbers. Sure Punahou coach Kale Ane knows his team will have a better chance if he keeps Kahookele down. Kamehameha has stung him for more than 100 yards twice recently, and the teams have split them.
The Warriors are 6-2 over that span when they put someone over the century mark.
100-yard rushing performances against Punahou since 2009
2013: Vavae Malepeai, 139
Punahou 24, Mililani 14
2012: Aofaga Wily, 225
Kahuku 21, Punahou 13
2012: Aofaga Wily, 188
Kahuku 42, Punahou 20
2011: Bronson Barretto, 137
Kamehameha 24, Punahou 17
2011: Kamana Pimental, 138
Punahou 31, Saint Louis 19
2011: Aofaga Wily, 180
Kahuku 30, Punahou 24
2010: D.J. Kawewehi, 117
Punahou 17, Kamehameha 14 (OT)
Trends mean a little more on the Punahou side, since Ane has called the shots for 102 wins. Kamehameha has a new coach who is doing different things, but Doug Cosbie has almost certainly got ahold of a tape of the last time Punahou’s quarterback took aim at Kamehameha.
Punahou quarterback Larry Tuileta torched the Warriors for 358 yards in a 34-14 win early last season, with Kanawai Noa grabbing 178 of them. Kamehameha took the next meeting, but Luke Morris was at the reins for the Buffanblu and Noa sat out with a sprained ankle.
Kamehameha has handled four of the five passing games it has seen this year — Saint Louis threw for 291 against them — but ‘Iolani reminded the Warriors how things can go bad quickly if they don’t keep the pressure on Tuileta.